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The Industry Buzz

The Industry Buzz features carnival, amusement park, fair and festivals news direct from the lots. If you have newsworthy information that you would like to share on, please email For full feature news articles and exclusive interviews, please check our news and interviews section.

Pat Guthrie buys Space Wheels and plans to restore them
Gold Medal Shows is pleased to announce that they have recently purchased the original Velare Brothers Space Wheels. The ride travels on four trailers and was built in 1958. The Space Wheels were a part of the Royal American Shows lineup for many years. The ride is now at Gold Medal Shows state of the art winter quarters where it will undergo a full and complete restoration.  Posted by Matt Cook on 2/7/2012

Showmen Association Members get FREE Admission to the IISF Trade Show in Gibtown on Thursday

On Thursday, February 9, 2012, members of the OABA, NICA, and all other Showmens Associations will be admitted to the IISF Trade Show for FREE.  All members must show a paid, 2011 membership card.

The IISF Trade Show kicks off February 7 through February 11, 2012 in Gibsonton, FL.  Visit for more information.

See Ya in Gibtown!

  Posted by Matt Cook on 1/27/2012

Jean George of Georges Finer Foods Passes
Jean George of Georges Finer foods past away late Saturday or earlier Sunday morning. Services are Tuesday night at Hillsboro Memorial Gardens 2323 W Brandon Blvd. in Tampa.   Service will take place at 1PM Wednesday.  Posted by Matt Cook on 1/24/2012

Don Prevost Passes

We are sad to inform the passing of long time industry concessionaire, Don Prevost.  More details will be posted as they become available.  More information can be found on our message board by clicking here.

  Posted by Matt Cook on 12/29/2011

Marion County Fair Moves Dates, Changes Midway Operators
The Marion County Fair Board (Indiana) voted to change the dates for the 2012 fair from late July to early June.  The midway has been provided by Drew Exposition for the past 26 years and will now be serviced by North American Midway Entertainment.  The Fair is scheduled to take place June 22-30, 2012.  Posted by Matt Cook on 12/15/2011

AD Vivona Passes

MCW is sad to announce the passing of A.D. Vivona.  Arrangements are as follows:

Monday Nov. 28th 6PM-9PM Visitation with a memorial service at 7:30PM at:
Stanfill Funeral Home
10545 S.Dixie Hwy
Miami, FL 33156
  Posted by Matt Cook on 11/24/2011

Lowery & Crabtree Partner in Ownership of a Chance Giant Wheel

Lowery Carnival Company and Crabtree Amusements announced a partnership in the ownership of a 4 trailer Chance Giant Wheel. The wheel which is currently being set up at the Louisiana State Fair was previously owned by Tony Guadagnos Carnival Midway Attractions in California.

  Posted by Matt Cook on 10/25/2011

LD Wheeler Passes

Arrangements for LD Wheeler are as follows:  Wed. 26th 2011 visitation 10am; funeral 12:00 noon at Lathams Funeral Home in Elkton, KY. 

  Posted by Matt Cook on 10/24/2011

Rainbow Valley Rides to add two new rides in 2012
Rainbow Valley Rides has reported that they plan to add two new rides to their existing ride line up for the 2012 season.  Show co-owner Chip Kedrowicz said they would be replacing their Alpine Village Fun House with a Owen Trailers produced Mardi Gras and replacing their ARM Ali Baba with a Wisdom Genesis.  Posted by Matt Cook on 10/21/2011

Norton Auctioneers under new ownership

Famed amusement and carnival auctioneer, David A. Norton announced that Daniel Satow and Darin Spieth are the new owners of Norton Auctioneers, which he founded in 1966. Although David has retired, he will be on-hand to assist Dan and Darin, as well as customers and clients.

Dan Satow and Darin Spieth are no strangers to Norton Auctioneers of Michigan and the amusement industry, as well as commercial equipment and properties. Dan is an auctioneer, professional appraiser, and Realtor. Darin Spieth is a professional auctioneer as well as a Realtor. Dan started with Norton Auctioneers at the young age of 12, and Darin was a head auctioneer with Norton's for 12 years. Dan and Darin are taking over the positions of President and CEO, respectively. They are excited to be rejoining Norton Auctioneers and look forward to being on the road again.

Says Satow, "I look forward to getting re-acquainted with all of my colleagues from the past and meeting the new faces in today's business that are making things happen."

Dan and Darin's experience, expertise, and enthusiasm is a great asset to Norton Auctioneers. "The addition of Dan and Darin will ensure the professionalism of Norton Auctioneers, Inc. as we continue to play an important part of the amusement industry."

The transition has been a smooth one, with Norton's office manager for over 30 years, Denise Kinsey, assisting. Denise may be seen "on the road" once again, working auctions across the nation. Additionally, Denise is available to help customers with records and receipts from past auctions.

  Posted by Matt Cook / P.R. on 9/19/2011

Bloomsburg Fair Canceled
Here is the story announced today:,0,7112424.story  Posted by Ron Weber, Editor on 9/14/2011

Hurricane Irene Closes Dutchess Co. Fair Early
Hurricane Irene forced the closure of many events across the eastern seaboard including the Dutchess County Fair in Rhinebeck, NY.  The fair whos midway is provided by Powers Great American Midways, closed for the final Saturday and Sunday of the fair due to the hurricane warnings.  The Maryland State Fair (midway by Deggeller Attractions) is open and running a Hurricane Irene special:  2 for 1 admission and a $15 unlimited ride wristband when purchased between noon and 2pm.    Posted by Matt Cook on 8/28/2011

NAME adds LED Lighting Package to all Giant Wheels
When speaking with NAME Astro Fair Unit Manager, Pat Repp, he informed us that all of the company owned giant wheels and century wheels have been outfitted with the Rides 4-U programmable LED lighting package.  The Chance Century Wheel which travels on his unit will be the last wheel to get the package in the coming weeks.  Posted by Matt Cook on 8/26/2011

Bad Weather hits Missouri State Fair

Bad storms raced through Sedalia, MO last night and did some damage to the Missouri State Fair.  There have been reports of downed trees, power lines and tents.  Fortunately, there were no injuries to humans or livestock.  Wade Shows owner Frank Zaitshik reported that there was lots of damage, most of which can be repaired. It mangled the Enterprise back wall and Tony & Willie Lowerys Mardi Gras was pushed back 10 to 12 feet. Damage is being assessed and they plan on opening the midway during the afternoon.

  Posted by Matt Cook on 8/18/2011

Wade Shows Reports Record Weekend at the Missouri State Fair
Frank Zaitshik reported that his Wade Shows had their biggest first weekend in history at the 2011 Missouri State Fair.  Zaitshik is hoping to keep pace with last years numbers during the week and have another good weekend during the final days of the fair.  Zaitshik was also proud to announce that the third unit of Wade Shows is the first unit to convert all of their rides to LED lighting.  Posted by Matt Cook on 8/17/2011

Wisconsin State Fair implements a Guardian Policy in response to Mob Attacks

In response to a series of mob attacks at the Wisconsin State fair on opening night (Thursday, August 4th), the Wisconsin State Fair has chosen to implement a youth guardian policy at 5pm. This policy requires that all youth under the age of 18 must be accompanied by an adult, 21 years or older. This policy will be enforced on all customers entering the fair after 5pm for the remainder of the 2011 fair. Rick Frenette reported Friday that there were 24 arrests and no reported injuries to fair goers, however, 7 officers sustained injuries.

  Posted by Matt Cook on 8/5/2011

Ionia Free Fair Canceled due to Flooding
The Ionia Free Fair (Ionia, MI) has been closed due to flooding.  The fair, which opened on July 21, was scheduled to end on July 30, however will not open the final three days.  Grand River levels and extremely heavy rain have forced the closing of all on-site parking lots, and have made it impossible to conduct fair activities. The forecast of additional rain (possibly heavy) could worsen the situation, and the possibility of additional flooding.  Posted by Matt Cook on 7/29/2011

IISA Museum Nearing Completion
Beau Pugh reported that construction on the IISA Carnival Museum in Gibsonton, Florida is about three weeks away from completion.  Although construction is almost done, he stated that they would likely not open the museum to the public just yet.  He added that they would like to add more exhibits and artifacts to the museum and also that New Yorks National Showmens Association is considering donating some of their historical pieces to the museum.  Posted by Matt Cook on 7/21/2011

Armstrong Shows adds Sky Wheel to route; installs LED lighting package
Armtrong Shows has added a Chance Sky Wheel to its route.  The Sky Wheel was sold to Armstrong by Dixieland Carnival, who originally purchased it from the Mighty Bluegrass Shows.  Armstrong was proud to announce the addition of a Rides 4-U Maxtron LED lighting package to the ride.  It will be the first Sky Wheel to be retro fitted with the programmable LED lighting package.  Posted by Matt Cook on 7/6/2011

Jack Cox has passed
MCW is sad to report that long time concession manager of the James H. Drew Exposition, Jack Cox, passed away on June 19, 2011 after a difficult battle with cancer.  Our thoughts and prayers to out to his family and friends.  Posted by Matt Cook on 6/21/2011

Tip Top Shows reports positive start
Tip Top Shows reported a positive start to their season during the shows winter route in Florida.  The show played the Santa Rosa County Fair last week which had a slow start but a strong weekend finish.  Much of the slow start was attributed to a change in spring breaks for the local schools.  The show will begin to head north and opens in Rockford, IL and Racine, WI next week.  Posted by Matt Cook on 4/12/2011

Chris Giordano elected 2nd Vice President of the Mid-West Fair Association
Shreveport, LA—The State Fair of Louisiana’s President & General Manager, Chris Giordano, was recently elected 2nd Vice President of the Mid-West Fair Association at the annual meeting in Houston, Texas. In this position, Giordano assists with site and facility arrangements for future annual meetings. The Mid-West Fair Association is an organization comprised of approximately 38 fairs across the country. The organization mainly consists of agricultural fairs, much like the State Fair of Louisiana, whose mission is to assist in developing the agricultural and industrial resources of the state. The Mid-West Fair Association also supports sharing industry information and best practices among its membership. “It’s an honor to be elected to the board of the Mid-West Fair Association, and I know my association with the organization will only lead to better attractions and practices at the State Fair of Louisiana,” said Giordano. The State Fair also celebrates the promotion of staff member Robb Brazzel. Brazzel has been employed by the State Fair for nearly three years, and he now takes on the role of Exhibits & Concessions Manager. His main responsibility involves recruiting exhibitors and concessionaries for the fair. The 2011 State Fair of Louisiana will take place Oct. 27 – Nov. 13, celebrating its 105th year in operation. The 2011 fair again promises an assortment of entertainment – from agricultural exhibits to carnival rides to unique food items.  Posted by Ron Weber  on 3/16/2011

Congratulations to Robert and Robin Briggs

Congratulations to Robert and Robin Briggs on the birth of there 2nd child Saturday morning.   Nicholas Patrick Briggs was born on 3/12/2011, weighing in at 7lb 8oz.  Nicholas will be a little brother to their first child, Robert Junior.  Robert and Robin own Modern Midways based out of Steger, Illinois.  Proud grandparents are Frank and Charlene Briggs, owners of Midwest Midways, and proud uncles Edward Briggs and Frank Briggs Jr.

  Posted by Ryan Vawter on 3/14/2011

Wade Shows finishes up 32% in Orlando

At the Central Florida Fair, Wade Shows finished 32 percent up over 2010. It was the shows best finish since 2004.  A new midway layout helped increased game revenue at the fair, even more than food increases.  This is definitely a positive sign for both the carnival industry and the game business.

  Posted by Matt Cook on 3/8/2011

Steve Ianni is the New Concession Manager at Powers

It was announced today by Powers Great American Midways that Steve Ianni has been hired as the shows new concession manager.  In pervious years, Steve has worked with Strates Shows, J&J Amusements, and Amusements of America.

  Posted by Matt Cook on 3/8/2011

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